Search Images Maps Play YouTube News Gmail Drive More »
Sign in
Screen reader users: click this link for accessible mode. Accessible mode has the same essential features but works better with your reader.

Patents

  1. Advanced Patent Search
Publication numberUS20030164318 A1
Publication typeApplication
Application numberUS 09/933,759
Publication dateSep 4, 2003
Filing dateAug 22, 2001
Priority dateAug 10, 2001
Also published asCA2354886A1
Publication number09933759, 933759, US 2003/0164318 A1, US 2003/164318 A1, US 20030164318 A1, US 20030164318A1, US 2003164318 A1, US 2003164318A1, US-A1-20030164318, US-A1-2003164318, US2003/0164318A1, US2003/164318A1, US20030164318 A1, US20030164318A1, US2003164318 A1, US2003164318A1
InventorsGaston LaCasse, Philippe Cusson
Original AssigneeIpl Inc.
Export CitationBiBTeX, EndNote, RefMan
External Links: USPTO, USPTO Assignment, Espacenet
Crate for carrying glass panels
US 20030164318 A1
Abstract
A crate for carrying glass panels comprises a longitudinal body frame consisting of a base, opposite side panels and opposite end panels and including supports extending vertically from the base for holding glass panels in the longitudinal direction of the frame. The supports are pivotally mounted to move between a vertical position to receive and hold the glass panels and a horizontal position in which the supports lie over the base once the glass panels have been removed. The side panels are inwardly foldable to rest over the supports once in their horizontal position. The end panels each include an upper end section inwardly foldable to rest over the side panels when folded over the supports and a fixed lower end section which is constructed to contact the end panels of superposed and underposed similarly constructed crates thereby allowing such crates to be vertically stacked when the glass supports, side panels and upper end sections of the end panels are in their folded position.
Images(6)
Previous page
Next page
Claims(10)
1. A crate for carrying glass panels comprising:
a longitudinal body frame consisting of a base, opposite side panels and opposite end panels; and
supports extending vertically from said base for holding glass panels in a longitudinal direction in said frame; said supports being pivotally mounted to move between a vertical position to receive and hold glass panels and a horizontal position wherein said supports rest over said base once said glass panels have been removed from said crate;
wherein said side panels are inwardly foldable to rest over said supports in said horizontal position; and
wherein said end panels each include an upper end section inwardly foldable to rest over said side panels when folded over said supports and a fixed lower end section adapted to contact end panels of superposed and underposed similarly constructed crates thereby allowing said crates to be vertically stacked when said supports, said side panels and said upper end sections are in a folded position.
2. A crate as defined in claim 1, wherein each said side panel includes an upper panel section which extends horizontally parallel to said base to form a top cover for said crate.
3. A crate as defined in claim 1, wherein each said side panel is formed of three panels sections hingedly connected to one another and being foldable in accordion-like manner.
4. A crate as defined in claim 1, wherein each upper end section of said end panel includes a pair of corner posts and each lower end section of said end panel includes a pair of corner posts in respective vertical alignment, when in a vertical position, with said corner posts of said upper end section.
5. A crate as defined in claim 4, wherein each said corner post of said upper end section of said end panels has an upper extremity adapted to support a lower extremity of a corner post of a fixed lower end section of a superposed stacked similarly constructed crate.
6. A crate as defined in claim 4, wherein each said corner post of said fixed lower section of said end panel has an upper extremity adapted to support a lower extremity of a corner post of a fixed lower end section of a superposed similarly constructed crate when said supports, said side panels and said upper end sections of said end panels are in a folded position.
7. A crate as defined in claim 4, further comprising a box-like structure having a top, opposite sides and opposite ends and including corner posts engageable with the upper extremities of corner posts of said upper section of said end panels to enable storage of glass panels of greater height than that of glass panels in said crate.
8. A crate as defined in claim 1, wherein said supports consist of a pair of comb-like members spaced longitudinally along said base.
9. A crate as defined in claim 1, further comprising means to prevent said upper end sections from accidentally folding.
10. A crate as defined in claim 9, wherein said means consists of a flat bar fixedly mounted to said lower end sections and including a finger adapted to engage a ridge on said upper end section.
Description
FIELD OF THE INVENTION

[0001] The present invention relates generally to a crate for carrying glass panels, such as the curved glass windshields used in vehicles.

BACKGROUND OF THE INVENTION

[0002] Various containers, racks or carriers have been used in the past for storing or transporting glass panels such as windshields. For example, such apparatuses can be find described in U.S. Pat. No. 4,033,597 issued Jul. 5, 1977 to Boyer and U.S. Pat. No. 4,778,064 issued Oct. 18, 1988 to Gold. Although the carriers described in these patents are aimed to protect the windshields which have a brittle and somewhat fragile nature for transport or storage, they do not fully enclose the windshields so that they may still be damaged during their transport as well as, in some cases, during their storage.

OBJECTS AND STATEMENT OF THE INVENTION

[0003] It is therefore an object of the present invention to provide a crate for carrying glass panels which securely contains windshields in an enclosed manner during transport or storage.

[0004] It is also an object of the present invention to provide such a crate which is so constructed that, during transport and storage, they can be stacked with similarly constructed crates.

[0005] It is yet another object of the present invention to provide such a glass panel crate which is adaptable to various sizes of glass panels.

[0006] The present invention therefore relates to a crate for carrying glass panels, which comprises

[0007] a longitudinal body frame consisting of a base, opposite side panels and opposite end panels; and

[0008] supports extending vertically from the base for holding glass panels in a longitudinal direction in the frame; the supports being pivotally mounted to move between a vertical position to receive and hold glass panels and a horizontal position wherein the supports rest over the base once the glass panels have been removed from the crate;

[0009] wherein the side panels are inwardly foldable to rest over the supports in the horizontal position; and

[0010] wherein the end panels each include an upper end section inwardly foldable to rest over the side panels when folded over the supports and a fixed lower end section adapted to contact end panels of superposed and underposed similarly constructed crates thereby allowing the crates to be vertically stacked when the supports, the side panels and the upper end sections are in a folded position.

[0011] In one form of the invention, each side panel is formed of three panel sections which are hingedly connected to one another and are foldable in accordion-like manner.

[0012] In another form of the invention, the crate is so constructed as to enable its stacking whether containing glass panels or not.

[0013] Other objects and further scope of applicability of the present invention will become apparent from the detailed description given hereinafter. It should be understood, however, that this detailed description, while indicating preferred embodiments of the invention, is given by way of illustration only, since various changes and modifications within the spirit and scope of the invention will become apparent to those skilled in the art.

BRIEF DESCRIPTION OF THE DRAWINGS

[0014]FIG. 1 is a perspective view of an enclosed crate made in accordance with the present invention;

[0015]FIG. 2 is a perspective view of the crate, including glass panels, with one side panel not shown to view the interior of the crate;

[0016]FIG. 3 is a perspective view similar to FIG. 2 with the glass supports folded over the base and showing the folding of a side panel;

[0017]FIG. 4 is an illustration of the folding of the side panels;

[0018]FIG. 5 is a perspective view showing two folded crates ready for stacking;

[0019]FIG. 6 is a perspective view of the crate of FIG. 1 with the addition of a top structure for receiving glass panels of a height greater than those which are received in the crate; and

[0020]FIG. 7 is a cross-sectional view taken along line 7-7 of FIG. 6 illustrating the anti-closing device.

DESCRIPTION OF PREFERRED EMBODIMENTS

[0021] Referring to FIG. 1, there is shown a crate, generally denoted 10, which consists of a longitudinal body frame including a base 12, opposite side panels 14 and 16 and opposite end panels 18 and 20.

[0022] Referring also to FIG. 2 where side panel 14 has been omitted for illustration purposes, the base 12 displays a pair of longitudinally spaced comb-like supports 22 and 24, each consisting of a series of vertical posts 26, 28 which are laterally spaced from one another in order to receive a series of glass panes 30 having a given size and curvature and extending in the longitudinal direction of the frame. The top of the posts 26, 28 are capped with pads 32, 34 to contact and protect the windshields 30. The lower ends of the posts 26, 28 are respectively mounted on a common horizontal member 36, 38 having its respective opposite ends pivotally mounted to a fixed base member 40, 42 so that the support assemblies may be moved from the vertical position shown to a horizontal position lying parallel to and over the base 12 (see FIG. 3).

[0023] The side panel 14 consists of three sections 14 a, 14 b and 14 c while the side panel 16 consists of three sections 16 a, 16 b and 16 c. In the closed condition shown in FIG. 1, the two side sections 14 c and 16 c lie in a horizontal plane to form the top of the closed container.

[0024] Referring more particularly to FIG. 3, the end panel 18 comprises a fixed lower end section 44 and an upper end section 46 which is pivotable as explained further hereinbelow. Similarly, the end panel 20 consists of a fixed lower end section 48 and a foldable upper end section 50. The lower end section 44 of end panel 18 includes a pair of corner post 52 and 54 while the upper end section 46 has a pair of corner posts 56 and 58 in vertical alignment with posts 52 and 54 in their vertical position shown. Similarly, the lower end section of the end panel 20 includes a pair of corner posts 60 and 62 (see also FIG. 5) while the upper end section 50 has a pair of corner posts 64 and 66 in vertical alignment with the lower posts 60 and 62 in their vertical position.

[0025] L-shaped braces 70 and 72, 74 and 76 fixed to the corners posts of the upper end sections 46 and 50 are pivotally mounted at their lower end to the base structure of the frame (two pivot points being shown at 78 and 80) thus allowing the upper section of the end panels to pivot into a horizontal position over the folded glass supports 22 and 24 and the folded side panels as explained below.

[0026] Referring to FIGS. 3 and 4, the side panels are adapted to be folded in an accordion-like manner about their hinges 82 and 84 so that they may lie in a horizontal folded condition over the glass supports 22 and 24. In the complete folded condition of the glass supports, the side panels and the upper end sections of the end panels, the upper extremities 86, 88, 90 and 92 of the corner posts 52, 54, 60 and 62, extend in a plane somewhat above the plane lying over the upper most folded end panel 46.

[0027]FIG. 5 shows that, in the complete folded condition, the crate 12 may receive, in a stacked manner, a similarly constructed crate 12′ in a folded condition where the corner posts 52, 54, 60 and 62 are in vertical alignment with the corner posts 52′, 54′, 60′ and 62′ of the superposed crate 12′.

[0028] Crates can be stacked in a glass containing condition such as illustrated in FIG. 1 where the upper extremities 94, 96, 98 and 100 of the corner posts of the upper end section of the end panels 46 and 50 may contact the lower extremities of the corner posts 52, 54 and 60 and 62 of a superposed crate whether in a folded condition or in an enclosed condition such as shown in FIG. 1.

[0029] A series of braces (four being shown as 102, 104, 106, 108) are fixedly secured in pairs to the lower extension of each corner post. They are L-shaped and define with the base of the frame and the post apertures to enable the fork of a fork-lift truck to engage the frame for handling and storing. These braces also serve to provide the exact alignment of corner posts of two superposed crates when in a stacked condition.

[0030] Referring to FIG. 6, a box-like structure, generally denoted 110, is provided to rest on the crate 12 in cases where the glass panels are of a height greater than those usually contained in crate 12. The box-like structure 110 comprises a top 112, a pair of opposite side panels 114 and 116 and a pair of opposite end panels 118 and 120. This structure has four corner posts 122, 124, 126 and 128 which are adapted to engage the upper extremities of the corner posts 56, 58, 64 and 66 of the crate 12. For such installation, it is evident that the two upper side panels 14 c and 16 c of the lower crate 12 must be removed.

[0031] Referring to FIG. 7, there is provided a device 200, 202 on each opposite end panel 18, 20 for preventing the respective upper end sections 46 and 50 from folding inwardly in certain situations. Each device 200, 202 consists of a flat bar 204, 206 which is fixedly attached to the lower end portion 44, 48 (see also FIG. 5) and which has, at its upper end a finger 208, 210 which can be moved outwardly (due to the flexibility of the bar) to engage or disengage from a lower edge 212, 214 of the upper end portions 46 and 50 of the end panels.

[0032] Although the invention has been described above with respect to one specific form, it will be evident to a person skilled in the art that it may be modified and refined in various ways. It is therefore wished to have it understood that the present invention should not be limited in scope, except by the terms of the following claims.

Referenced by
Citing PatentFiling datePublication dateApplicantTitle
US7270236 *Jan 16, 2004Sep 18, 2007Safelite Glass CorporationReusable windshield pallet
US7784613Sep 18, 2007Aug 31, 2010Safelite Group, Inc.Reusable windshield pallet
US7802526 *Mar 5, 2007Sep 28, 2010Paccar IncModular and customizable returnable rack system
US8528732 *Apr 6, 2005Sep 10, 2013Carglass Luxembourg Sarl-Zug BranchContainer
US20120000866 *Jun 30, 2010Jan 5, 2012Randal HuszczoGlass Storage and Transport Rack with Pivoting Arms
EP1533250A1 *Dec 23, 2003May 25, 2005Samsung Corning Precision Glass Co. Ltd.Packaging container and packaging method for flat display glass
WO2011148180A2 *May 26, 2011Dec 1, 2011Belron Hungary Kft - Zug BranchPallet container
Classifications
U.S. Classification206/448
International ClassificationB65D85/48
Cooperative ClassificationB65D85/48
European ClassificationB65D85/48
Legal Events
DateCodeEventDescription
Mar 15, 2012ASAssignment
Owner name: NATIONAL BANK OF CANADA, CANADA
Effective date: 20120302
Free format text: SECURITY AGREEMENT;ASSIGNORS:IPL, INC.;PLASTIC ENTERPRISES, CO., INC.;REEL/FRAME:027873/0070
Aug 22, 2001ASAssignment
Owner name: IPL INC., CANADA
Free format text: ASSIGNMENT OF ASSIGNORS INTEREST;ASSIGNORS:LACASSE, GASTON;CUSSON, PHILIPPE;REEL/FRAME:012105/0264
Effective date: 20010801